Mama, was ist eigentlich Natur? / Mom, what is nature really?
Kaiser Wilhelm Museum
16 November 2018 – 5 May 2019Mama, was ist eigentlich Natur? - Mom, what is nature really?
Mama, was ist eigentlich Natur? - Mom, what is nature really?
How should one best answer this seemingly harmless question? After exploring the museum's collection and vast archive of history of exhibitions, books, leaflets, documents, newspaper clippings, and recorded speeches, this exhibition project by Bik Van der Pol presents a selection of more than 70 works from the collection of the Kunstmuseen Krefeld that address the landscape in art, industrialisation, climate change and the disappearance of nature. Departing from the Krefeld collection, Bik Van der Pol explore what shaped the 20th century and still shapes the present.
The title is taken from a review of the 1971 Haus-Rucker-Co exhibition in Haus Lange titled COVER. In the course of that show, Haus Lange was transformed into an artificial climate zone, at that time already calling attention to the growing problem of environmental pollution and its consequences for mankind.
Bik Van der Pol have also realized a sound and wall piece based on reviews from the museum’s archives. The wall piece is made in collaboration with graphic designer and typographer Thomas Artur Spallek. His Saint Helena typeface was named after the Saint Helena olive tree that has been extinct since 2003. Here, an extinct life form is given voice and shape.
The soundpiece Gesammelte Stimmen - Gathered Voices is built from fragments from the archive's newspaper reviews from the 1970s: Krefelder Kurier, Westdeutsche Zeitung, Rheinische Post, Neue Rhein Zeitung, Vorwärts, Der Spiegel, Die Welt, Frankfurter Rundschau, Badische Zeitung, Deutsches Allgemeines Sonntagsblatt. Duration: 9 minutes. Voice actor: Jakob Forster.
Mama, was ist eigentlich Natur? - Mom, what is nature really?, with works of Andreas Gursky, Andreas Slominski, Heinrich Steinicke, Josef Albers, Abraham David Christian, Jan Dibbets, Robert Morris, Ulrich Rückriem, Yves Klein, Hans Haacke, Vito Acconci, Lothar Baumgarten, Mamma Andersson, Edith van Leckwyck, Christo, Michel Sauer, Robert Voit, Michael van Ofen, Bik Van der Pol, Dan Flavin, Jannis Kounellis, Bernd Becher/ Hilla Becher, Dieter Roth, Hein Engelskirchen, Arman, Christopher Williams, Peter Hutchinson, John Chamberlain, François- Marie Banier, George Segal, Haus Rucker Co., Thomas Ruff, Constant, James Webb, Martin Schwenk.
The Umweltzentrum Krefeld, located on the grounds of a former cement factory, developed a public program inside the museum. Mama, was ist eigentlich Natur? - Mom, what is nature really? is developed in collaboration with curator Constanze Zawadzky.